A New Historical Database For The NYSE 1815 To 1925: Performance And Predictability
William N. Goetzmann
Yale School of Management - International Center for Finance; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
Roger G. Ibbotson
Yale School of Management; Zebra Capital Management, LLC
Smeal College of Business, The Pennsylvania State University
July 14, 2000
Yale ICF Working Paper No. 00-13; Yale SOM Working Paper No. ICF - 00-13
In this paper, we collect individual stock prices for NYSE stocks over the period 1815 to 1925 and individual dividend data over the period 1825 to 1870. We use monthly price and dividend information on more than 600 individual securities over the period to estimate a stock price index and total return series that extends virtually to the beginning of the New York Stock Exchange. We use this data to estimate the power of past returns and dividend yields to forecast future long-horizon returns. We find some evidence of predictabiity in sub-periods but little predictability over the long term. We estimate the time-varying volatility of the U.S. market over the period 1815 to 1925 and find evidence of a leverage effect on risk. This new database will allow future researchers to test a broad range of hypotheses about the U.S. capital markets in a rich, untouched sample.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 45
JEL Classification: G1, N2
Date posted: August 14, 2000
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